In the days of film, photographs with exposures of perhaps 30 minutes or more were the way to go. The negative produced was then edited in the dark room resulting in the final image. I wasn’t photographing stars back then so I don’t know the details. Now, using a digital camera, a long exposure isn’t possible, as it would result in a grossly overexposed unusable image. I have to make multiple photographs and then blend the photographs together in a computer program to produce my final image that reveals the movement of the stars. (OK, OK, I know that the earth’s rotation is the real movement.)
I made this image over a month ago by combining 30 photographs taken over the period of about 15 minutes. It would not pass muster if I were a working to produce an image for even an amateur astronomer, but as an artistic rendering, I like it. When I look at it, I feel like I am seeing small part of the immense universe. My place in the universe may be miniscule and transient but I am a real living part of it nonetheless.
This second star trails image is composed of 63 images, each exposed for 30 seconds. I made this photograph last week. I am pleased with both of these images. I hope you like them too. It was an exciting adventure to put myself out in the very cold night air in pursuit of an image that allows me to really appreciate the beauty and mystery in the repeating dance of the stars.
When I was a child I remember my father pointing out the “Northern Lights” as well as the big and little dippers to me from our farm in NC. It is becoming more difficult to find places dark enough to allow theses views now. I just recently read an article that you might find interesting. It confirmed my difficulty in finding a location from which to see and photograph the stars.
I am really excited about this new, to me, area of photography. I welcome your comments!